There are few things that I get riled up about and women’s issues is one of them. Last night, after following the details intermittently regarding SB5 in the Texas Senate this week, I stayed up until 2:30am EST in order to follow the proceedings of the filibuster led by Sen. Davis. After the chaos that erupted, it was finally deemed, after I was asleep, that the voting on the bill did not count and thus the filibuster was successful.
Never before have I had the opportunity to watch a state senate (yup, not that C-SPAN stuff) online live along with between 80,000 peaking at 160,000 other people from around the world. That meant no fibs, no lies, and no cheating allowed – and, to be honest, that was reassuring in such a critical voting situation. Following along with people in the senate on twitter, other onlookers, and just people with opinions gave the whole situation a sporting-event/reality show sort of feel and it was exhilarating to see so many people invested in politics.
However, what I found to be more upsetting than all the enduring bullshit that continued to come up throughout the night was the commentary following. This bill not only raised awareness regarding the issue of abortion, but the patriarchal system that we function under.
As I do not wish to talk about this forever, I wanted to highlight the comments of one anti-choice “friend” of mine on Facebook. I do not have a problem with his selected political stance, but in his lengthy status disagreeing with the proceedings of the evening he ended stating that women needed to “suffer the consequences” of their actions. He did specify that there should be exceptions in the case of incest, rape, or health of the mother, so that sort of “suffering” was unfair – but he essentially alluded that every potentially unwanted pregnancy is a “punishment” for sex.
This was strange coming from a person who insists that life is valuable, a blessing, and should be cherished. I personally identify as pro-choice because I understand that it is not an easy decision to make. Also, the access to abortions and other medical care for women who do make the choice is so limited, that even if they technically have a choice, they may not have access to the care they need.
Ultimately, last night (this morning?) was a victory that I hope sets a precedent for the future. Maybe one day we’ll live in a world where women will no longer have to fight for their rights, but until then – gotta keep rolling.